Emerging role of extracellular vesicles in liver diseases

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11 Scopus citations


Malhi H. Emerging role of extracellular vesicles in liver diseases. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 317: G739 –G749, 2019. First published September 23, 2019; doi:10.1152/ajpgi.00183.2019.—Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are membrane-defined nanoparticles released by most cell types. The EVs released by cells may differ quantitatively and qualitatively from physiological states to disease states. There are several unique properties of EVs, including their proteins, lipids and nucleic acid cargoes, stability in circulation, and presence in biofluids, which make them a critical vector for cell-to-cell communication and impart utility as a biomarker. EVs may also serve as a vehicle for selective cargo secretion. Similarly, EV cargo may be selectively manipulated for targeted therapeutic delivery. In this review an overview is provided on the EV classification, biogenesis, and secretion pathways, which are conserved across cell types. Next, cargo characterization and effector cell responses are discussed in the context of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, alcoholic hepatitis, and acetaminophen-induced liver injury. The review also discusses the potential biomarker and therapeutic uses of circulating EVs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)G739-G749
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2019


  • Alcoholic hepatitis
  • Exosome
  • Microvesicle
  • Nanoparticle
  • Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Physiology (medical)


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